Gabriel Knight: The Sights of New Orleans

Sep.17, 2014, under featured, gabriel knight

The Gabriel Knight series has always featured radically different art styles between entries. The first entry employed 2D, VGA graphics with an icon based parser, similar to earlier Sierra titles such as King’s Quest VI. The second game utilized digitized photography, full motion video and live actors whereas the third entry is entirely comprised of 3D polygonal graphics.All styles featured pros and cons from a technological standpoint though today we’ll focus on the first game and how the backgrounds were updated in the 20th Anniversary Edition.One of the most noticeable technical/stylistic aspects of the original was the fact nearly half of the screen was taken by the dialog and inventory boxes. St. George’s Book Shop in the 20th Anniversary Edition.This means the screen view is letter boxed and while it presents a cinematic view it has the side effect of limiting the player’s view. The 20th Anniversary Edition allows for players to view the action on a full screen without any limitations. Sins of the Fathers allowed players to hide the icon window, a feature was also brought back for the remake.The original game’s backgrounds consist of hand painted images which were then scanned onto the game itself. While the art itself if beautiful, the technology of the time limited these to a maximum of 256 colors and a resolution of 300x200. As a result the backgrounds suffer from artifacts and other issues. The classic scene where Gabriel meets Malia.All of the backgrounds for the 20th Anniversary Edition were created so as to preserve the spirit of the original. Rather than going for realism, the characters and backgrounds feature their own distinctive art style. The Schloss Ritter castle also received a major update. This time it was made to more closely resemble its Gabriel Knight: The Beast Within counterpart while still keeping the rooms that were so characteristic of the first title. Finally we have the comic book panels. These have always been one of the defining features of the original entry in the series. All of the panels have been re-done while still introducing new ones and new elements to the story. There is little changed in the overall mood of the game between then and now beyond updating it for the new generation of fans. How longtime players will react to the 20th anniversary edition isn’t clear, but its setting and mood have always done a thorough job at delivering an emotional impact to the overall story.Gonçalo GonçalvesSocial Media AssociatePhoenix Online Studios

The Gabriel Knight series has always featured radically different art styles between entries. The first entry employed 2D, VGA graphics with an icon based parser, similar to earlier Sierra titles such as King’s Quest VI. The second game utilized digitized photography, full motion video and live actors whereas the third entry is entirely comprised of 3D polygonal graphics. (continue reading…)

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Gabriel Knight: The Sounds of New Orleans

Sep.10, 2014, under featured, gabriel knight

Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Father was originally released in 1993 and the music in the game has withstood the test of time and most of the tracks are still beloved by adventure game fans to this day. And going back to the roots of the series for the 20th anniversary remake has been a journey for composer Robert Holmes as he tried to recapture the magic from the original and update it for today’s audience.Composer for both the original and 20th Anniversary releases of Gabriel Knight.The technology to compose music was a lot different twenty years ago. While today you can synthesize pretty much anything you want, back in the 1990s everything was done using MIDI and the output was done using less powerful sound cards or even the PC speaker itself. Mark Seibert, the music director at Sierra, tried to keep the company up-to-date with the most “bleeding edge” music technology at the time, but even so there were limitations to what could be done back then.Robert had been a part of the Sierra family for a couple years working on soundtracks, but when Gabriel Knight came up he was paired instantly with Jane Jensen to work on the music for the game. Because he was brought in during the formative stages, he knew exactly what Jane wanted soundwise. The darker adult themes fit perfectly with his background and interest in the old Hollywood style and pop music. He wanted to make the soundtrack memorable so that you could instantly recognize it even when not playing the game and listening to it on its own. And he succeeded in this as a lot of the tracks are still very memorable today.Gabriel Knight’s soundtrack took subtle approach in its ambianceThey wanted to stay away from traditional New Orleans and Cajun music as it had been already done many times before. A “new” kind of darkness was what was needed to make Sins of the Father stand out both as a game and form of media. A more subtle ambiance that “bubbled” up the subtext of the subject being represented through music. There were several influences to what would become the soundtrack to the game, including movies like Promised Land, Key Largo, and Gone With the Wind. And, of course, musical influences like Elton John, Genesis, and Brian Eno.When it came time to re-score the game’s soundtrack for the remake Robert actually had to relearn a lot of what he wrote. He had forgotten most of the music and needed to relearn how it went. As they went back and fine-tuned the tracks, Robert had the time to look back on his choices twenty years ago. There is little changed in the overall mood of the music between then and now beyond updating it for the new generation of fans. How fans of the original will react to the 20th anniversary edition isn’t clear, but music is one of the areas of gaming that really give an emotional impact to the overall story.Serena Nelson Social Media Intern Phoenix Online Studios

Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers was originally released in 1993 and the music in the game has withstood the test of time and most of the tracks are still beloved by adventure game fans to this day. And going back to the roots of the series for the 20th anniversary remake has been a journey for composer Robert Holmes as he tried to recapture the magic from the original and update it for today’s audience. (continue reading…)

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Gabriel Knight: Pre-Orders Available Now!

Sep.09, 2014, under featured, gabriel knight

Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers 20th Anniversary Edition is a modern remake of the classic Sierra On-Line title, Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers. The game features brand new puzzles and scenes, gorgeous new high-res backgrounds, a remastered soundtrack, and more New Orleans flavor to the beloved original story. Plus it adds exclusive new behind-the-scenes material including original concept sketches, articles and brand new audio interviews with Jane Jensen and members of the original Sierra development team to provide a more complete view on the Gabriel Knight series than has ever been available before. Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers 20th Anniversary Edition is set to release for PC and Mac on October 15th, 2014. Moreover, pre-orders are now available at Steam, GOG.com, the Phoenix Online Store and more at 15% off the $19.99 retail price. Pre-orders also exclusive include the Gabriel Knight 20th Anniversary Edition soundtrack by Robert Holmes. In anticipation of the release, starting on October 6th we will be running a “10 Days of Gabriel Knight” countdown with a host of new assets releasing daily. These include screenshots, music downloads, cutscenes from the game, and a brand new Gabriel Knight short story by Jane Jensen—the first new addition to the official Gabriel Knight canon since 1998! Gonçalo GonçalvesSocial Media AssociatePhoenix Online Studios

Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers 20th Anniversary Edition is a modern remake of the classic Sierra On-Line title, Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers. The game features brand new puzzles and scenes, gorgeous new high-res backgrounds, a remastered soundtrack, and more New Orleans flavor to the beloved original story. Plus it adds exclusive new behind-the-scenes material including original concept sketches, articles and brand new audio interviews with Jane Jensen and members of the original Sierra development team to provide a more complete view on the Gabriel Knight series than has ever been available before. (continue reading…)

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Gabriel Knight – What Do You Know About Voodoo?

Sep.04, 2014, under featured, gabriel knight

The story of Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Father focuses on a voodoo cult situated in New Orleans, Louisiana. Voodoo’s roots are in Africa as a paganistic religion that focuses their worship on “loas”, or the spirits of their ancestors and gods. It was brought to the American colonies as part of the slave trade where the African slaves continued to practice in relative secrecy. Over time Christianity started to seep into the culture and rituals and a sort of blending of beliefs occurred. By the start of the game, “Louisiana Voodoo” (as it’s known) is rather different from its African forebears. (continue reading…)

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Gabriel Knight – The Need For A Mature Storyline

Sep.03, 2014, under featured, gabriel knight

As gaming aged and matured, there was a growing need for more adult storylines and experiences. Nowhere was this truer than the Adventure Gaming genre in the early-to-mid 90s. Sierra On-Line and LucasArts had many offerings which would later be considered classics in the genre, but the vast majority leaned heavily on the cartoonish and humorous side. (continue reading…)

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Heroes & Legends: Conquerors of Kolhar Steam Trading Cards

Aug.28, 2014, under featured, Heroes And Legends

Heroes & Legends: Conquerors of Kolhar was recently launched on steam. Just a few days ago we took a look at the community support the game received on Valve’s platform. (continue reading…)

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Heroes & Legends Conquerors of Kolhar Steam Community

Aug.26, 2014, under featured, Heroes And Legends

Heroes & Legends: Conquerors of Kolhar was recently launched on Steam. As always, we love interacting with the community, so we decided to highlight its response on Valve’s platform.While there aren’t a lot of user reviews yet thus far, every one of them has always gathered a ‘thumbs up’.“it delivers a solid product that gives you your money’s worth" by Steam user Kerensky"I just wanted more and like I’ve said before, if you’re making a game and that’s the reaction a player has to it, you’re doing something right" by Steam user VideogameBacklogIt’s great to hear people enjoy the fast, frantic combat in Heroes & Legends. We’d like to hear everyone’s opinion on the game, so if you haveany videos, screenshots or artwork you’d like to share be sure to check out the Steam community hub. Don’t forget that with every purchase of Heroes & Legends you also receive a printable Monster Booklet, a set of 10 printable character cards and of course, the Kolhar Compendium booklet.Gonçalo GonçalvesSocial Media AssociatePhoenix Online Studios

Heroes & Legends: Conquerors of Kolhar was recently launched on Steam. As always, we love interacting with the community, so we decided to highlight its response on Valve’s platform. (continue reading…)

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Heroes & Legends: Conquerors of Kolhar Now Available!

Aug.21, 2014, under featured, Heroes And Legends

Heroes & Legends Out Now

The day has finally arrived, Heroes & Legends: Conquerors of Kolhar is now available worldwide! (continue reading…)

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Heroes & Legends Conquerors of Kolhar Extras

Aug.20, 2014, under featured, Heroes And Legends

Heroes & Legends Conquerors of Kolhar is a fantasy based casual Roleplaying game with Strategy elements. The game is currently set to launch this Thursday, August 21st on Steam, Gamersgate, the Mac App store and even our own Phoenix Online Studios Store.To celebrate the game’s launch we have prepared several gaming goodies for you. If you purchase Heroes & Legends, in addition to the game itself you will also receive:The Monster Book, a bestiary containing the game’s base enemy types including their bios, enemy type, stat bonuses and special abilitiesYou will also receive a set of printable, glamor cards, showing off the in-game characters.Finally, we have The Kolhar Compendium, the official Heroes & Legends: Conquerors of Kolhar booklet. It provides players with tips, hints and other info on how to beat the game, all of it spoiler-free. Best of all, The Kolhar Compendium is completely free!Click here to download The Kolhar CompendiumWe can’t wait to share all the extras and content with you, luckily, we won’t have to wait long as Heroes & Legends launches tomorrow! Then you can face the hordes of Kolhar armed with all this extra knowledge.Gonçalo GonçalvesSocial Media AssociatePhoenix Online Studios

Heroes & Legends Conquerors of Kolhar is a fantasy based casual Roleplaying game with Strategy elements. The game is currently set to launch this Thursday, August 21st on Steam, Gamersgate, the Mac App store and even our own Phoenix Online Studios Store. (continue reading…)

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Heroes & Legends Launches in 2 Days

Aug.19, 2014, under featured, Heroes And Legends

August 21st is only 2 days away now, this is the big day in which Phoenix Online Publishing launches the indie casual fantasy RPG game, Heroes & Legends: Conquerors of Kolhar. (continue reading…)

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